Looking forward by looking back
There's still time to share your recipes! I'll draw a name after the holidays.
For now, I wanted to share that it's been a purposeful thing for me to be doing absolutely NO gift knitting in the days leading up the holidays. I wholeheartedly believe in knitted gifts, and I enjoy seeing what others are knitting for their friends and loved ones; I just made it a point to lower my expectations for myself in the belief that if it wasn't already done, it wasn't going to get done.
So with no knitting to show until December 26th, you'll have to put up with some non-knitting content.
I learned so much last month while both my mom and daughter were here at the same time -- when three generations are under one roof for a couple of weeks, there are some things you can't help but figure out about yourself.
One of the things that Erica told me was that she wants to be able to stay home with her kids (when she has them, that is -- we're not in any hurry, right?) I vividly remember the agonizing choice it was for us to decide that I would no longer work full time, but would be there for her when she got home from school every day. At the time, it was JUST her and we had no plans for other children yet. To sit across from her as a full-grown young woman, and have her tell me that she will be making the same choice -- was a gift. When I quit my job, she was almost 8 -- and I know she remembers how much I enjoyed my job and the co-workers I considered my friends. On paper, it wasn't so clear that we could AFFORD the choice, but once we made the decision, I never went back to work full-time. Since then, whenever I've considered going back to work, even though the opportunities were good ones, the time still isn't right. For now, I'm happy with my part-time position at my local yarn shop.
Now that I have the boys (who will be 10 and 8 next year), I can't imagine not being a part of their day. While my mom was here, she questioned why I go to so much trouble to drop them off and pick them up at school. This is the first year I have done this -- that I haven't taken advantage of the school bus that stops directly in front of our house. I tried to express to her that I do it because I can; because I know that I will never get this time back. When Erica graduated from high school this past May, it was probably THAT day that I realized how quickly time had passed. And frankly, it's the reason I don't knit as much as I used to. And when my mom asked why I make their lunches every morning (and I indulge the limited palate of my youngest son by fixing him the SAME THING every day), I tried to explain it as ONE tiny little thing in the big picture. We don't spoil them, but I do try to indulge them when I can.
The kicker -- each of them has delighted me this past year by confirming in some way that they appreciate my knitting. My youngest has been the most vocal about asking for handknit socks and demanding to learn how to knit (we still have an attention and attitude issue). My older son is quietly appreciative that I knit him some blue socks and he said he would like a matching hat, scarf and mittens. And Erica called and left me a voice mail last night asking that I send her a text message with the name and number of the yarn store closest to her so she can buy find yarn to knit a scarf for her dad. (Oh, I hope they're nice to her there!)
And in this photo, taken the day before she left to go back to Florida:
She felll in love with the "Geranio" Malabrigo Worsted -- it was so irresistible she had to cast on and start knitting at the store